Karnage Creations LLC Bid on Monroe Park – Final

Posted: March 24, 2014 in Uncategorized
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This bid was submitted to the City Clerk at 4:25 on March 24th in paper form.

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Karnage Creations LLC bid on Monroe Park

Whereas Monroe Park was declared by the Council of the City of Richmond and Virginia Commonwealth University to be Public Greenspace in Perpetuity, and the Park is now  being offered up to bids for Lease, and whereas the only bidder thus far (in fact, the only bidder expected or wanted to bid) the Monroe Park Conservancy (MPC) fails utterly to represent the best interests of the majority of the citizens of the City of Richmond, Mo Karnage (current legal name Moriah Karn) and Karnage Creations LLC are offering a competing bid which we believe to be a better deal for the City of Richmond and more importantly, the people of Richmond.

Karnage Creations LLC, while normally engaged in the business of revolutionary prose, childcare, old window repair and carpentry, will gladly lend it’s name and service to Keep Monroe Park Open and Free. Karnage Creations LLC does not agree with the privatization of any public park, but applies for this lease only in hopes of minimizing damage. Ideally we would think a park should always remain public, but we acknowledge the less than perfect practices of the current City of Richmond administration and the need for members of the community to step up and participate.

Karnage Creations LLC would like to object to the hasty way in which the Monroe Park lease bid was made public, and object to the favorable treatment given to MPC in this process. Ideally, Karnage Creations believes that the Monroe Park issue needs to be revisited in 6 months, after other organizations have had sufficient time to begin developing comprehensive renovation and maintenance plans. MPC had many years in which to develop their plans, as well as support from local government. Other organizations deserve equal treatment in the bidding process.

Karnage Creations LLC would also like to formally object to allowing Charles Samuels, Ellen Robertson, or any council member who sits on Venture Richmond’s board to vote on any issue which involves Venture Richmond. The conflict of interest seems obvious, and the politics of it seems corrupt.

Karnage Creations LLC is willing to make the generous (compared to MPC) offer of paying $1 a month for the lease of Monroe Park. Karnage Creations is requesting a month to month lease, that way, at any time, the citizens of Richmond can, via Council vote, revert the running of the park back to the Parks and Recreation department.

Karnage Creations LLC and Mo Karnage are well known members of the local community, with many years of organizing and networking experience. While financially we personally do not have much to offer, we have access to a much more valuable resource than money- the people of Richmond. We are fully confident that we will be able to organize and recruit the necessary donations and volunteers from a large variety of local businesses, non-profits, churches, and individuals. What we don’t know or have, people we know do or have, or know of other people who do or have. Their are many amazing, positive, talented, and smart people in Richmond that we would hope to make a welcoming space for collaboration of the betterment of Monroe Park and the community. We look forward to collaborating with many amazing people and groups in Richmond. It takes a village, and we happen to know one hell of a village.

Karnage Creations will create a special department to deal with all of the Monroe Park business, named the Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee.

  1. Neither Karnage Creations, nor Mo Karnage, nor any member of the Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee, will ever be paid for their roles in the maintenance or direction of Monroe Park. No profits will be kept by any of the above named parties, and all profits will be returned to the Parks and Recreation department of the City of Richmond for the use in maintaining and improving other parks in the City.
  2. The Board of Directors for the Park will consist of 2 houseless people, 1 formerly houseless person, 1 unemployed person, 1 senior, 1 public housing resident, 1 person from each neighborhood surrounding the park (Oregon Hill, Jackson Ward, Carver, the Fan), 1 student, 1 Parks and Rec worker, 1 City Council member, 1 elementary school student, 2 people from organizations which serve free food or distribute free clothing. We are willing to adjust this make up if other people have more ideas! The board WILL NOT include anyone who is a member of the Vulture ahem Venture Richmond organization, unlike the Monroe Park Conservancy who shares 2 members directly with Venture Richmond, and has 7 other compromised members either through family, or their employer sitting on Venture Richmond’s board.
  3. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will do it’s best to keep cash out of its control. As opposed to collecting donations, they will focus on collecting the items needed. We will ask for community support in the form of benches, seeds, mulch, playground parts, plants, and more!
  4. Renew Richmond a local 501c3 has agreed, via it’s director John Lewis, to partner with Karnage Creations LLC to create and manage edible landscaping in Monroe Park to provide food and community to the area. Both groups will maintain the edible landscapes and possible future community gardens and fruit/nut trees.
  5. Karnage Creations LLC will donate it’s existing office space at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective at 2005 Barton Avenue for any administrative needs specific to Monroe Park outside of Parks and Rec. Therefor no additional funding will ever be needed for Monroe Park offices, unlike the $3000 a month MPC expects to spend.
  6. The Checkers Building will be renovated into a community commercial grade kitchen, to allow for all organizations who want to serve free food in the park a place to cook that food.
  7. Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will help with the follow through of the City funded and mandated renovations of plumbing, electrical, bathroom and water fountain improvements, and pavers for the paths.
  8. Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will organize volunteer work days to help with maintenance and leaf removal among other things. The volunteer work days should reduce the amount of paid maintenance necessary.
  9. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will make legal guarantees that Monroe Park will not be used for parking.
  10. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will allow food carts to access Monroe Park and/or the surrounding sidewalks in compliance with local city ordinances and policies. We will build no special amenities for these food carts. If we ever were to create a permit process for food carts on the paths in the park, it would be limited to 2 at any given time, and the money from those permits would go towards supporting the use of the Checkers Building as a free community kitchen for free food programs.
  11. Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will organize to have utility bills for the Checkers buildings paid for by various churches and other non-profits interested in and invested in the availability of the commercial community kitchen for the feeding of all.
  12. Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will secure new benches, moveable tables and chairs, and community chess tables.
  13. Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will organize the construction of a play ground in Monroe Park, returning the swings and other fun aspects to engage both the young and the young at heart in safe, healthy activity.
  14. Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will never hire or use private security in the park.
  15. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will never fence off the park, and will work with any necessary contractors to ensure that a useable section of the park always remains open during renovations.
  16. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will not remove any trees without the direction of the City of Richmond’s Urban Forestry Department. New trees that might be planted will be part of the edible landscaping plan developed by Renew Richmond
  17. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will only ever charge a permit fee for events which themselves charge a fee. All money from these fees will go to the Parks and Recreation department. Events where no fee is charged will not be charged a fee, and will not be expected to apply for a permit. We will maintain a website, and a physical bulletin board in the park, where we will post dates of events in the park that we are aware of, that way folks can avoid conflict and overlap. The schedule for the community kitchen will be more officially organized just to make sure things run smoothly.
  18. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will guarantee that no corporation or other organization will get naming rights to Monroe Park or Checker’s building. This will never be Altria park, no matter who donates however much.
  19. Monroe Park will be a park of the people and for the people. Popular public events such as the May Day parade, Halloween Parade, Critical Mass bike rides and more will be supported by the Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee.
  20. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will do its best to ensure that Monroe Park will remain a safe and inclusive place for people of all classes, races, sexual orientations, abilities, gender identities, religions, ages, superpowers and more. We will work to improve the physical accessibility of the park. The Committee will work to provide free workshops in the park on a regular basis on a variety of relevant social justice issues. We hope to bring in outside organizations willing to donate their time to facilitate said workshops.
  21. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will promote public art and work with local artists to have free workshops available regularly on a variety of artistic mediums and crafts.
  22. The Keep Monroe Park Open and Free Committee will work to maintain, renovate, and encourage a Monroe Park that is a benefit to the Richmond community. We will do this not just with corporate money or money from a few, but with the grassroots support from a wide swath of Richmonders, which will make our task far easier and more fulfilling than anything being attempted by the Monroe Park Conservancy.

Some of the various documents and articles which we feel are vital to understanding our position, and why our approach will be more effective than that of the Monroe Park Conservancy for both renovating Monroe Park and also working in solidarity with the homeless to work towards a Richmond without a people without a home.

We strongly believe that the methods of the Monroe Park Conservancy to remove homeless people from Monroe Park is both cruel and also ineffective. The way to solve any problem is to address the root causes of the problem. Otherwise we will be stuck moving homeless people from place to place around the city, which is an incredibly cruel thing to do to our most vulnerable population.

The 2013 US Conference of Mayors Hunger and Homelessness Survey

http://www.usmayors.org/pressreleases/uploads/2013/1210-report-HH.pdf

Virginia’s Homeless Crisis Response System

http://www.vceh.org/extras/VCEHCoCReportFINAL.pdf

 

We would also argue that Monroe Park needs to remain a public area open to all – homeless and not, because non-profit organizations are not actually long term solutions to homelessness, and our dependence on them as a City puts our homeless at risk, especially in situations like with the Conrad Center, when it shut down last year. A public park should remain public, that way the homeless and others always have a place to congregate.

Freedom House, Conrad Center shutting down

 

Freedom House to Cease Operations

RICHMOND, VA. – Freedom House, a feeding and housing operation for homeless adults in the Richmond area, will cease operations by the end of April. At a meeting April 2, 2013, the Board of Directors agreed that it could no longer financially support operations that include The Conrad Center, a feeding program; The Community Shelter, a transitional housing service; and Sean’s Place, a “step-up” housing program that supports permanent relocation.

The Board decision follows a review of Freedom House by Randy Wyckoff, a local business consultant specializing in non-profit management. “This has been a difficult, yet unanimous decision by our board,” said Board President Mark Staff and volunteers are currently finding new placements for its residents and contacting area organizations to relocate the feeding program and other on-site “There are approximately 1,000 homeless individuals in the region and Freedom House houses about 40,” said Cipolletti. “Unfortunately, our business model, as currently structured, is unsustainable.”

Founded in 1983 by area churches, Freedom House opened The Conrad Center (1400 Oliver Hill Way) to provide meals to the homeless with the assistance of some 800 community volunteers. It has also served as the central intake location for those requesting homeless services in the Richmond area.

The Community Center (12th and Hull St.) has provided transitional housing and case management support for 38 single adults for six months to a year. Sean’s Place has provided longer-term housing to four residents as they prepared for self-sufficiency.

“The Board is grateful to the thousands of volunteers, donors and staff who have supported Freedom House and those we have served over the last 30 years,”

 

We also think that there is a level of futility to the plan presented by the Monroe Park Conservancy. There really is not much that they can do to change the fact that the people of Richmond both want and need Monroe Park to remain accessible. The fallout from any attempts to restrict usage of Monroe Park are bound to make Richmond look bad on a national scale.

There has been a lot going on in Richmond the past few months. 2014 is turning out to be a pivotal year for this city, a year where everything is on the line. Right now, on the precipice of multiple changes, I’m taking a look into my crystal ball to see what the future may hold. Like any prediction, this is no static vision. Things don’t have to turn out like what I’m seeing.

What happens if a development in Shockoe Bottom is created using $80 million of public funds to build a ball park in a historic site? What happens if Monroe Park is privatized and attempts are made to kick out Food Not Bombs and the homeless? What happens if our schools and children continue to suffer because Vulture Richmond gets tax breaks they don’t deserve?

Well, what I’m seeing is:

The Resistance will happen.

The Resistance won’t be a formal organization, but a banner taken up by dozens, hundreds, thousands, who are so sick of living in a place where the few rule the many, where money speaks louder than our voices, and where there is more oppression happening everyday.

The Resistance won’t stick to one set of tactics, but will embrace a true diversity of tactics to liberate Richmond from the oppressive bad decisions brought about by Mayor Jones, City Council, Vulture Richmond, and the Monroe Park Advisory Council—among others.

I’m seeing members of the Resistance outside of the houses of members of City Council, Monroe Park Advisory Council, Vulture Richmond, Looting RVA, local Developers and more, holding up boom boxes John Cusack style, blasting “Nowhere to run to baby, no where to hide” by Martha and the Vandellas. Because, as we all know from campaigns like Stop Huntington Animal Cruelty, the enemies have faces, names, and addresses. Any good resistance will be sure to gather this intel, and use it appropriately, to bring to the protests to the people responsible for the decisions privatizing our City.

Critical Mass bike rides will take a new tone, following a route between the homes and businesses of individuals involved in the privatization of Richmond. Moped and motorcycle gangs will take the time to circle the block where Alice Massie lives, rev their engines in front of Mayor Jones’ house, and do donuts in the parking lots of Vulture Richmond and others. A Resistance play list will develop, the songs will haunt supporters of privatization throughout their daily lives.

Banners will be dropped from high way overpasses with messages promoting liberation and an end to corruption in Richmond. A generation of youth will discover the joys of street art, wheatpasting and spray painting their way from one end of town to the other, spreading messages of the Resistance, of freedom, of public spaces. And don’t tell me the youth aren’t hungry for action. We’ve seen them, you’ve seen them. They are itching for something to do.

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You may put up fences, but they will come down. Your bulldozers will be lucky to have an unblocked day. There will be treesits, crane sits, people perched at the Redskins training camp between the field goal uprights. There will be lockdowns, there will be glue in locks, there will be glitter, there will be cream pies in faces. There will be heckling. I hope you can put up with all that and more.

There will be parties in the streets, uncontrollable crowds, meet-ups in the unlikeliest of places, flashmobs that break into song and dance in really inconvenient places. There will be boycotts of restaurants, bars, retail, and sports teams involved in these schemes. There will be a continued push for a $15 dollar minimum wage, and strikes across the city until that comes to be. There will be queers protesting for more than the right to marry. There will be sit ins for change, office occupations, there will be unruly musical performances.
All these developments and privatizations meant to bring prestige and pride to Richmond will simply become sights of protest and problems. The legacy left behind by Jones will be one of embarrassment and excruciating public failure.We will feed each other, teach each other, hold copwatch and know your rights workshops, trade herbal medicine ideas, exchange massages, have support groups, hold consent workshops, create visions of a better world. We will drink a lot of coffee. We will support each other mentally, physically and emotionally. We will fundraise bail money for our comrades.

It may seem unlikely for such a vision of the future to come about, but you are forgetting that the regime is boring, privatization is boring, rules are boring. Resistance is fun. Resistance speaks to people who have no interest in attending city council meetings, or of the nuts and bolts of whatever oppressive plan is on the table.

In the future the Resistance disrupts every single city meeting. Resistance has enough participants that you could never ban them all. A new face at every meeting, ready to shout down your white lies, your assertions of a false reality, your Orwellian double speak. No meeting goes unscathed, disruptions at meetings and press releases reflect the disruptive effect your decisions have on the people.

Maybe you think the issues in Richmond are too small to spark the Resistance. But you forget about endless war, increasing poverty, bad schools, dying capitalism, unemployment, public transit, police brutality, noise ordinances, dance ordinances and more. You forget the larger context of suffering and oppression and racism and sexism and homophobia and transphobia and classism. People are worn out. People are worn out. People are worn out. And at some point, the last straw goes on the camel, and the back breaks.

When we break, we rise.

When we break, we rise.

When we break, we rise.

This isn’t a threat or even a warning. This is a prediction, a vision out of passion. Founded in the history of Monroe Park the development of it as a sacred ground. Yes, sacred ground. Not the same sacred ground that you find in Shockoe Bottom. But a place of great sacredness none the less. Where protests and passion are deep in the roots of the trees. The land there is drenched in the power of the people, and the power of the people don’t stop, say what. There ain’t no power like the power of the people and the power of the people don’t stop, say what.

Privatize Monroe Park and the entirety of the East Coast Occupy movements will descend on Richmond, to occupy not only Monroe Park, but the medians of Monument avenue too. You can bring all the storm troopers at your disposal, but you won’t dispose of us, you won’t dispose of the Resistance. There are more where we come from. More desperate people, more tired people, more bored people. More people with broken backs who are ready to rise.

Everyone knows it is wrong to privatize a public park. Everyone knows only true cowards prey on the hungry, prey on those without homes, prey on those who need the most solidarity in our society. Only true cowards like the 1 percent, who could go to any park they wanted to, would try to force the homeless out of Monroe Park.

Maybe it is cheesy, but I think it holds true, that the generation at hand is catching fire, full of mocking birds, and ready to hunt zombies. Unfortunately for you, you are the zombies, you are the capital, you are boring, and we are divergent. More people understand what fascism looks like, know the sacrifices required in a resistance, and know that true honor lies in taking action to reduce suffering. Popular culture has given those of us who didn’t know examples of what fighting back can start to look like, and people are ready to start fighting back. The Resistance has far more potential for capturing the popular imagination than all those ordinances and resolutions do.

You see, there has to be a line somewhere. A line in the sand if you will. And y’all are in the process of crossing that line a couple different ways. Maybe you don’t see it as a line yet, maybe you won’t until it is too late. Understand that you simply can not keep taking and taking and pushing and pushing and expect no push back. You will get pushback. Pushed back.

Don’t get it twisted. This isn’t a declaration of war. It’s a declaration of weather, and a storm is coming. Weather above and under ground gonna hit this city. I don’t think you will be ready for this storm. I don’t think you want to try to get through this storm. But hey, this is just a vision. Who knows what the future holds.

Just keep an eye out for those storm clouds of resistance.

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#RVA #DwightJones #ShockoeBottom #Activism

The First Will Be Last: On Monroe Park

By Derek Jones (Food Not Bombs member)

wpid-photo-full.jpeg

Editors note: This essay is a creative essay. Neither the author nor the publishers would ever promote illegal activity. But we do promote keeping Monroe Park Public, Open, and Free by Any Means Necessary! You figure it out. This is a slightly edited version of a statement read at the Land Use Committee meeting this week, where the committee made the bad choice to move the Monroe Park Lease to Council for voting. We hope to see you all out on Monday March 24 to STOP this plan.

The Master Plan for the Monroe Park renovations says that, “50 years of crime and vagrancy have tainted Monroe Park’s reputation” (pg. 1). and that the park needs renovations because of the “[…resurgence in popularity of many of the surrounding residential neighborhoods, retail corridors, and the recent increase in enrollment at VCU” (pg. 1).

But this plan is not driven by the increasing need for public, open space in Richmond.

Alice Massie said before City Cuoncil on February 18th, that this plan isn’t about “excluding any type of people or demographic”, but anyone that read the plan knows that is not true.

A permit requirement that is to be issued at the discretion of the Monroe Park Conservancy and a charge of $35 per application for an event will keep feeding and clothing distribution groups from having access to the park.

The Conservancy may well decide that the park needs to be fenced off for an unknown amount og time during renovations, thereby preventing anyone from using it.

Alice Massie would have you believe that the renovations plans are about building fields for plauing quoits and pentanque because they are popular pastimes among park goers in Liverpool, England, about allowing certain vendors the opportunity to sell coffee and pastries in the park, and about cutting down 62 trees and replacing them with 80 new “canopy tree” species that were there 110 years ago because for an unexplained and expensive reason, 1904 is heralded as the “golden age” of Monroe Park.

But the sprucing up of the park detailed in their plan is incidental to it’s main purpose: The displacement of the homeless, the Blacks, and the poverty ridden. I say “Blacks” because according to a 2009 survey by Homeward, out of more than 1,000 homeless Richmonders they surveyed, more than 2/3 identified as African American or People of Color, and it is no secret that Monroe Park is on the outskirts of a “white” part of Richmond.

Page 55 of the plan dismisses the notion that chronically homeless citizens of Richmond are valid and stable park users, calling them instead “transients”, reading, ” Park goers generally fall into 2 groups: VCU students and transients”. It says that Monroe Park WAS (as in used to be) a site for Churches and Community groups to feed the needy on weekends, that as many as 50 people could be waiting in the park on weekends. There were actually about 400 people waiting on food or clothing this past Saturday, and people provide services in the park on weekdays as well.  The plan also says that “though the hiring of a park keeper in 2007 has helped to deter homeless feedings, that park remains a popular gathering place for Richmond’s homeless population during the day” (pg. 55).

Most disturbingly, page 61 of the plan for renovations  says that “[privately financed park managers] must make frequent visitor counts, with special attention paid to female/male ratios… The ratio of non-homeless to apparently homeless ones must be at least 75-100: 1 to draw female visitors in great numbers” (pg. 61).

If you approve the Conservancy’s plan to lease Monroe park you will be declaring Class War on all of Richmond. We will Occupy the Park indefinitely. Instead of petanque and quoits fields, we will plant vegetable gardens, fruit and nut trees. We will march through your neighborhoods and we will expel you from your restautants, grocery stores, and homes as you have done to us. You will become residents of Monroe Park, and you will be treated as second class citizens there because in our kingdom the first will be last and the last will be first.

keepmonroeparkopen

We think that intersectionality is a major thing going on in Richmond, and that we need to address the ways that various identities play into the situations people find themselves in. One instance of this is the high incidence of homelessness amongst LGBTQ youth. Richmond will be more improved as a City by addressing these issues instead of trying to force them away.

HOMELESSNESS AMONG LGBT YOUTH: A NATIONAL CONCERN

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homeless youthFor many of us, in November our minds turn toward plans for Thanksgiving, a holiday likely spent at home, surrounded by family. This scenario is far from the reality for many homeless youth in the United States. November is National Homeless Youth Awareness Month, reminding us that even as we think about what we are grateful for in our lives, we should consider all the work that needs to be done to improve the welfare of this vulnerable group.Approximately 1.6 million youths in the U.S. experience homelessness for at least one night each year. Additionally, 550,000 unaccompanied youth under the age of 24 are homeless for a week or longer; about 380,000 of these youth are younger than 18. These numbers demonstrate a great need for responses to short- and long-term homelessness among youth.One group that is particularly at risk for homelessness is lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth. LGBT youth are often homeless because they were rejected by their families, schools, and communities for their sexual orientation or gender identity. In a national survey of homeless centers and agencies that serve youth, it was reported that LGBT youth comprise 40 percent of the clientele served. In fact, one in fivetransgender people in their 30s report having been homeless at some point in their lives. These numbers show that homelessness among youth who are LGBT is much more than a niche problem; understanding and reducing homelessness among these youth is a crucial part of understanding and reducing homelessness, period.

Besides being at greater risk for homelessness, LGBT youth are more likely to become homeless at younger ages. LGBT youth are also more likely to be sexually assaulted on the streets and in shelters. In fact, in one study, 58 percent of lesbian, gay, or bisexual homeless youth reported having been sexually victimized, compared with 33 percent of heterosexual homeless youth. Gay and lesbian youth who experience homelessness are also more likely to be infected with HIV than heterosexual homeless youth.1

Homeless LGBT youth may be less accepted in shelters, programs, and foster homes. Among homeless transgender adults, 55 percent have reported being harassed by shelter staff; 29 percent have reported being turned away by shelters because of their gender identity; and 22 percent have reported being sexually assaulted by residents or staff. Although these statistics do not directly address what happens to transgender youth at homeless shelters, they paint a grim picture of what these and other LGBT youth might face.

There are some centers specifically for homeless LGBT youth, that recognize the unique problems that face LGBT homeless youth and provide them a safe place to stay while they acquire the skills needed to get back on their feet. Alone, though, these centers cannot solve the problem of homelessness among LGBT youth.

Looking forward, there is a great need for more high-quality research on the topic of gay and transgender youth homelessness to inform policies and practices. Some work is already being done to help train shelter staff and foster parents about the needs of gay and transgender youth. Perhaps most importantly, we should work to help families, schools, and communities support the healthy development of LGBT youth along with other at-risk young people, to prevent their becoming homeless in the first place.

 

Eliza Brown, Research Assistant

 


[1] Rew, L., Whittaker, T. A., Taylor‐Seehafer, M. A., & Smith, L. R. (2005). Sexual health risks and protective resources in gay, lesbian, bisexual, and heterosexual homeless youth. Journal for Specialists in Pediatric Nursing, 10(1), 11-19.

– See more at: http://www.childtrends.org/homelessness-among-lgbt-youth-a-national-concern/#sthash.gHxZ6SpS.dpuf

You might be wondering about the 3 million dollars. That is a big part of this lease deal. We don’t have 3 million dollars on hand. But neither does the Monroe Park Conservancy. They have been around for over 3 years now but have failed to fund raise anything for their efforts. We believe that we will be able to utilize a variety of local non profits in order to raise up the money, volunteers, and goods necessary to complete a successful renovation of Monroe Park.
The Monroe Park has had 3 years, give us 3 months, to show you who we can get to sign on to a plan to do a Monroe Park Renovation with the people in mind. We already have an agreement to partner with Renew Richmond. There are tons of other groups we would love to have a chance to work with including but not limited to ROSMY, REPHRAME, RPEC, and some more that involve letters other than R.
The Monroe Park Conservancy was given an unfair advantage in this bidding process, and there were multiple other groups who were interested in this process but were flummoxed by the incredibly short time frame given after the bid finally went public.
We would urge City Council to either stop considering putting Monroe Park up for lease, or to create a new, 6 month long period in order to allow other organizations a chance to really put their best foot forward and make a bid. Or you could totally accept our bid, we would be fine with that too.
We would like to thank the many people who supported the creation of this bid, Caroline Cox, Charles Poole, John Richmond, Derek Jones, Napi Ippolito, John R.F. Lewis,  and the many more who have offered support along the way. We all just want to keep our public parks public.
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